a separation of flesh

I guess three years was a good run…

I keep saying I’m going to go back to eating meat.  But, I just can’t bring myself to do it.  I have a concern that my body might have a reaction to flesh for the first time.  You know, it has been three years since I enjoyed my last piece of animal carcass and I am concerned that by re-introducing my stomach to meat, it will be like, “WTF?” and eject that stuff with a heavy dose of diarrhea real quick.  I don’t know if that would actually happen and if it’s worthy of such a worry but nevertheless, I’m apprehensive.  Therefore, I always say I’ll wait until the weekend when I’m off from work so I can eat and take a sudden massive dump if need be without having to worry about crapping on the carpet in front of customers.

“This weekend, I’m going to do it,” I say.  Yet, I never do.

I guess it’s just because I haven’t made peace with eating meat again.  For so long, I was steadfast in my vegetarianism, but it was easier when I was living in Savannah.  I wasn’t eating so much crap and had healthier meat alternatives.  Now, things have changed.  It’s much harder here.  I’m so fat and unhealthy and miserable.  Yet, I don’t want to change.  Well, I do want to change but I don’t want to have to eat meat to do it.  I also don’t want to have to eat vegetables.  Basically, I want to have my vegan cake and eat it, too.  You know, without it making me fat.  Not gonna happen.

So, I’m going to have to make some compromises.  Try to choke down some spinach along with my salmon.  It will be tough on both fronts but I’ll have to push myself out of this pudginess.  I just feel really bad about the whole situation.  I suppose you really realize how much you do (or don’t) believe in something when faced with obstacles that hinder your own well-being.  Really, my vegetarianism doesn’t have to be as hard as I make it.  Eat more vegetables.  Eat nuts and peanut butter for protein.  Tofu can taste like anything.  But, for me, I hate almost all vegetables and nuts and peanut butter get old after a while and so do Tofurkey sandwiches.  I’m also not crazy about tofu.  Basically, I’m bored with my diet and I’m getting tired of it.  There’s hardly any vegetarian friendly choices at restaurants (unless, once again, you like salads and vegetables) and no choices at all at fast food establishments.  The black box closes in again.

If I really felt strong in my convictions I would force myself to eat leafy greens and tomatoes and carrots but the thought makes me sick.  I have tried these foods and I can’t deal with them.  I know taste is an immature response to not eating healthy foods but that’s my reasoning and that’s just how it is.  Instead, I’ll be selfish and make it easier on myself an grab a chicken sandwich from a fast food joint and shrimp at a restaurant.  It’s just that, I have so many issues with food as it is.  I have an unhealthy relationship with food.  I use food as a comfort, therefore if I’m not eating food that I enjoy, there is no comfort.  And where there is no comfort, there is more agony for me to take on, something that I am not sure I could handle at this point in my life.  It’s more complex than that but hopefully you get the gist of it.  It’s not as simple as green food is gross.  It’s about what kinds of foods are going to help me from going off the deep end.  The other alternative is to just get fat and be gross and lethargic for the rest of my life, all in the name of not supporting the slaughter of animals for human consumption.  Or, I could just eat them and be done with it.  As much as I want to be an animal advocate, when it comes to me and my weight versus animals and their suffering, I’ll choose me every time.

And I guess that’s the sad part about it.  How can people take me and my animal advocacy seriously when I eat the animals I want to stand up for and give a voice to?  I’ll just be another hypocrite.  But, aren’t we all to some degree?  It’s kind of amazing and frustrating how humans operate sometimes.  Our actions are often contradictory and I think that’s a part of the reason why we are so complex- or screwed up- however you want to look at it.  We think one thing, say another and end up doing something else entirely.

One of the nice things about living in the country is the privilege of seeing cows grazing in pastures on my way to and from work.  We even have some that live outside our backyard.  They are really beautiful, peaceful creatures when you watch them just hanging out and eating and lying in the sun.  It always makes me sad to see them and think that one of those calves out there running with their friends or family might one day end up being my dinner.  From playing in a pasture to pâté on my plate.  I shudder at the thought.

Animals are born into agony only to die brutally just so humans can wear their skins for decoration or eat their flesh, all without a second thought to what they once were.  It all seems like such a waste of life to be put down and squashed so easily, so callously.  We take their lives for granted.  No appreciation, just gratification.  It feels like a lot of people don’t take the time out to think about where their food comes from or how it came to be that way.  We see the sterilized breaded chicken bits in a bag or even the ground beef, pink and wrapped up and ready to eat with no semblance of what it once looked like and it makes it easier to swallow those hamburgers and to eat those chicken fingers.  As I’ve stated before, it’s not that I’m even entirely opposed to killing animals for food.  I just don’t like the way they go about it, causing unnecessary suffering.  I guess I just wish more people took the time out to appreciate the life that was taken so they could be comfortable.

Sometimes I feel silly even writing about these kinds of things.  Some people probably don’t give eating meat a second thought and I literally go days and days thinking about it, worrying about it, debating what I should do.  I probably won’t write about this much more, either.  I mean, I’m no longer a vegetarian and I’ve already posted about my journey several times so there’s really nothing more to say and no reason to re-hash anything, unless it’s to say, “Had a tuna fish sandwich today.  Hate myself.  Thanks for reading.”

I’m not going to completely give up vegetarianism.  I’ll try to keep my meat consumption limited.  I’m going to try to avoid beef and pork.  I don’t guess there’s really any reasoning for picking one animal over another except chicken and fish is a bit healthier.  Remember, I decided to start eating meat again for health reasons (but mostly because of my weight).  I want to always keep that in mind.  I didn’t just flippantly decided to devour flesh again. 

As I said, things have changed.  Although I’m going back to eating meat, I feel guilty about it.  I probably always will.  After being a vegetarian for so long, it feels natural to have an aversion to meat and skip over eateries that I know don’t have anything I can have and passing by various meats in the grocery store and not thinking too hard about it or missing it all that much.  Now, I can have those things.  I am no longer limited in that aspect.  It’s almost liberating, although not so much for the animals.

Friday, I ordered a pizza from Mellow Mushroom, the most amazing pizza place I’ve ever had the pleasure of going to.  I ordered a favorite of mine from my pre-vegetarian days: the Funky Q chicken, consisting of barbecue sauce, cheddar cheese, grilled chicken and Applewood-smoked bacon.  Up until the very second I got on the phone with the lady I ordered it from, I was hesitant.  As I stated earlier, I kept saying I’d do it but I could never bring myself to venture into that territory.  As she asked me what I wanted, I blurted it out and that was that.  There was no going back or changing my order.  I was going to eat meat again after three years.

I brought it home, opened it up and took out a few slices and started eating.  I psyched myself up by just saying I was going to do it.  I wasn’t going to think about it or feel guilty or hate myself.  Of course, that would come later, as it always does when I overindulge with pizza or anything other “naughty” food.  The meat part would just be a bonus bout of self-hatred for me to endure.  And I did it.  I ate a few slices and didn’t think about it and I was no longer a vegetarian.

It was delicious.

I think that I’ll always carry some guilt with me about this.  I’ll always feel a bit conflicted.  But, I’m kind of used to it.  I feel conflicted about so many aspects of my life and guilt is something that usually comes along with that because I feel like I never make the right choices.  I’m always messing up something, feeling inadequate and useless.  So, we’ll just add one more thing to the pile and hope I don’t crack under the weight of it all. 

Finished off the pizza today.  Hate myself.  Thanks for reading.

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